Five golden rules for successful sales in offline retail
Are your colleagues completing one customer sale after the other? But, despite some of your team’s best efforts at providing advice, are customers still leaving the shop without buying anything? Now’s the time to bring that to an end! We know that not everyone has it in them to be a good salesperson, but with these simple rules, you and your colleagues will be able to sell more successfully and enjoy yourselves at the same time!
First impressions count!
You will know the feeling yourself. You go into a shop, look around and the sales assistant is loitering behind the counter with a bored expression on their face. Perhaps you get a brief hello from them, but that’s it. Not especially inviting. On the other hand, there are sales assistants who pretty much pounce on you as you set foot through the door, and then never leave your side. Also not ideal!
As the saying expresses so well: There are no second chances for a first impression! Therefore, a friendly greeting is the perfect start. Be pleased that you have a new customer to greet. If you show this, the person will be able to tell immediately. It doesn’t matter if you’re having a bad day. Allow some of your good mood to rub off on the customer! Because the first few seconds are decisive as to how much attention, sympathy and trust your opposite number awards you.
What is the reason that this person has come into your shop today? Listen carefully and try to analyse the reason and their wishes. You must definitely ensure you convey to your opposite number that you are giving them your complete attention, and that together with him or her, you will find a solution to their concerns. Whether you actually are in a position to fulfil the customer’s needs is of course not a foregone conclusion. The important thing is that the customer feels as if they’ve been understood and properly advised. This leaves them with a positive impression.
What sort of person is your opposite number? How does he or she behave? Are they tired and stressed? Do they speak loudly or quietly? What does their body language indicate? Are they somewhat reserved or more dominant? Extend your antennae and adapt your behaviour to your customer. This creates a common, trusted basis and eases communication. You thereby create an ideal feelgood atmosphere for your consultation session!
Ask, ask, ask!
In order to better evaluate your customer’s wishes, you should ask questions. Think about a visit to the doctor’s or hairdresser. At either of those places, you are sure to answer lots of questions before your counterpart springs into action in order to present you with the solution. So, ask questions, receive information in reply and convey your interest in the customer.
Ensure you ask the customer open questions, in order to receive more detailed answers. However, when it’s time to help the customer come to a (partial) decision, a closed question that they can answer with ‘yes’ or ’no’ is called for. These so-called confirmation questions should be posed in order to secure the sale. It is important that you are always aware of how the customer reacts to you and your questions. They should always be positively received.
Don’t be afraid of refusals!
Many salespeople offer the perfect sales pitch. They are skilled, the customer is presented with the perfect solution to meet their needs, and then it arrives: the moment for the sale to be closed! At this point, many become nervous and unsure of themselves. They feel as if they’re talking the customer into buying something, which therefore prevents successful completion of the sale.
Remain self-confident and determined right up to the close of the sale. The objective, completion of the sale, is now right in front of you. Assume that the customer will decide to go ahead with the purchase. This helps them make the decision. If your customer raises objections, then the decision has not yet been made. Approach the customer and ask him or her whether they need more information. If your opposite number still greets your presentation with a no, then accept that, and remain relaxed and friendly. The customer is thus left with a positive final impression, and is sure to return to you!